There is an ongoing debate in the humanitarian sector on how humanitarian aid can be optimised. The DRA is brought to life with the ambition to foster change within the humanitarian system. 

The DRA is more than the sum of its parts. While all DRA partners are committed to its vision and mission, they all have different mandates and focus areas. A one-size-fits-all approach is not helpful in the complex reality and diverse contexts of humanitarian crises. What does help is diversity, agility and specific partner lenses and expertise. The DRA is about collaboration, complementarity and learning, respecting identities and using each other’s strengths. The collaborative way of working entails that we learn from each other and push each other to improve quality and value for money. Through working together, we achieve a better response for the people in need. 


At the heart of the DRA is ‘putting the Grand Bargain commitments into practice’. The sector now recognises that the ‘what’ in humanitarian responses is less of an issue than the ‘how’. This is where the DRA is breaking ground. We are committed to a joint vision and finding ways to realise it together as an alliance. The DRA is a continuous global testing ground on the operationalisation of Grand Bargain (GB) and Core Humanitarian Standards (CHS) commitments such as localisation, multi-year funding and programming, accountability and community engagement. 


Humanitarian needs continue to increase, and grow more chronic and complex. More people are displaced from their homes than at any time since World War II. Refugee situations are becoming more entrenched. Women and girls are at increased risk of conflict-related sexual violence. As the climate crisis accelerates, we can expect more migration, conflict, pandemics and natural disasters. Climate change and migration drive urbanisation (over 50% in 2020, at least 70% in 2050), and urbanisation of humanitarian crisis and aid amplifies the need for agility, innovation and collaboration.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a profound shock for societies and economies. Amid ongoing conflict, hunger and climate change, the pandemic triggered a 40% increase in the number of people needing humanitarian assistance and the biggest global recession since the 1930s, threatening to deepen inequalities and increase poverty.